If you are considering doing yoga during your pregnancy here are some tips and things to think about. Remember our bodies are all made differently as are our ability to get into some poses. During pregnancy the hormone relaxin will make your connective tissue become softer enabling you to stretch further. However it is wise to stick to your stretch limit pre pregnancy and listen to your body. Don’t over push yourself or try to go really deep into the poses. Now is the time to nurture yourself and your growing baby.
The good news is your belly is not too big so you can do forward folds and twists without it getting in the way but avoid compression or over squashing of the womb. Just move gently in both twists and forward folds. It is advised not to get into too many inversions ( going upside down) so the embryo can literally hang on to the uterus.As the hormone relaxin is released in high quantities both in this trimester and the third it is advised to not go really deeply into poses that stretch the legs outwards ( abductions) such as wide leg seated forward fold. This is because relaxin open the pubis symphysis ( so your baby can get out) and you don’t really want it opening up now.
Trimester two and three
There is more weight bearing down and twists and back bends will feel good. However your belly may create a problem doing prone or face down back bends. Try putting a bolster under your thighs to lift your belly higher. Maybe a block or support under the pubic bone might work also.Sometimes if you use blocks under your hands it can lift your belly off the ground enough for you to do an updog or seal pose. Poses where you are seated with your legs open will give you lots of room for your belly, just remember not to push to far.Twists will feel good if you have room just try to keep the twist in the upper part of the back not in the lower belly.
When doing shavasanna or corpse pose, it is best to lie on your left side not back as this can compress the vein that brings blood back to your heart. Try lying with a bolster between your legs.
It is better not to hold the poses for a long time. One minute should be enough.
Here are some nice poses to do while pregnant. Experiment with blankets and bolsters.
If you are feeling nauseous or fatigued in the first trimester try cobra or straight arm cobra maybe with a bolster under the thighs
Try Baddha Konasana in all stages of pregnancy but being gentle on the inner thigh stretch
If you are feeling really tired kick back with child’s pose but put a bolster between your legs and separate your legs
To get into the hips and lower back a swan pose is nice, if you have a bolster you can pop that in front of you and lie over it
A gentle twist will alleviate lower back aches, you can straighten the lower leg if that feels more comfy